José Pedro Potocar, City Police Chief for Buenos Aires, was detained this morning after being suspended from his position since Saturday. Before his arrest, Potocar asserted that there was no way he could be detained. “There’s no reason to detain me like the district attorney is calling for. The principle is liberty and the exception is prison.” Looks like he spoke too soon.
Potocar is one of the main suspects in a case concerning illegal earnings in two Buenos Aires police stations. He is believed to have been one of the leaders of an illicit association taking money from businesspeople in Núñez and Saavedra in exchange for a ‘privileged’ security service. The accusation came from two witnesses from inside the Police who said that Potocar had been receiving between 35,000 and 40,000 pesos a month through alleged racketeering in the area. Various documents have been found in local businesses detailing contributions to the “Friends of the Police Station 31 Association”.
Potocar’s detention was ordered by district attorney José María Campagnoli last Wednesday and came after the former presented himself in Tribunales this morning. The case is being presided over by Luis Farías and has already involved the detention of several police officers and other officials from Police Station 31 in the capital. In the meantime the City Police will be conducted by the Secretary of Security, under Marcelo D’Alessandro.